Cilic eyes repeat of 2005 heroics


Marin Cilic believes Croatia have the same strength in depth as the team that won the 2005 Davis Cup as they prepare for only their second final against Argentina this weekend.

Over a decade ago a Croatia side inspired by Ivan Ljubicic secured the title with a 3-2 victory over Slovakia in Bratislava, Mario Ancic securing the decisive point.

Since that victory the Balkan nation's best performance was a 2009 appearance in the semi-finals - when they were beaten by Czech Republic - while they have dropped out of the World Group twice.

This year has seen them beat 2015 finalists Belgium, United States and France to reach the final - which will be on home soil - and Cilic believes they have the quality to go all the way.

"It was a huge achievement for our team, winning in 2005," he told a media conference.

"Ivan had an amazing year, winning 11 singles matches, plus with Mario winning too. 

"We had a great team for years and Ivo [Karlovic] also played really well and Mario was in and out with his injuries and we still made it to the semis in 2009.

"These last few years I think obviously the new team has come up. Borna [Coric] came on the team, Ivan [Dodig] is playing really good in doubles the last four or five years. Having Ivo back in the team is also a big one too.

"But we've had a tough draw from the beginning, having the first two matches away, so it's just amazing to be in the final and we hope that we can continue with this good run."

Captain Zeljko Krajan says his side are "very, very motivated" to claim a second title on what he describes as a "great occasion" for the current crop of Croatia's stars.

"Of course it is huge for us," he said. "

"Being from such a small country, we have a chance to win the Davis Cup - it's a privilege and we are very, very motivated for it. We know how big it is.

"You can already see all the interest around this tie. It's as big as it gets. We are playing at home, we have a chance to win. It's a great occasion for this generation."